This is a pretty amazing report from Bloomberg:

U.S. Justice Department agencies spent too much for food at conferences, in one case serving $16 muffins and in another dishing out beef Wellington appetizers that cost $7.32 per serving, an audit found.

"Some conferences featured costly meals, refreshments, and themed breaks that we believe were indicative of wasteful or extravagant spending," the Justice Department's inspector general wrote in a report released today.

I am not one of those dreamers who believes we could solve a significant portion of our financial woes by weeding out Waste, Fraud, and Abuse. But this is still infuriating. What we need to eliminate are public officials who take advantage of the taxpayer in this way. has an idea:

Pass the link along to your friends because the sad truth is that stories about wasteful spending on a relatively penny-ante scale like this are more useful in raising public ire than reports about another umpteen billion lost in whatever the latest federal boondoggle is. Earmarks work the same way, in fact: They're a tiny sliver of the budget but because they involve individual projects whose worth the average voter can kinda sorta gauge, they're more likely to make people angry than oceans of cash lost in the cracks of some abstract federal service.

The Atlantic also has some yummy details. Quoting the DOJ report, it notes that DOJ spent about $490,000 on food and beverages at 10 conferences.

Imagine the sense of entitlement it takes to stick the public with that kind of bill!